By George Hart for the Museum of Mathematics


The Dutch graphic artist M.C. Escher has inspired many people to create mathematical artwork.  This elegant cut-and-fold paper model of Escher’s famous lithograph, Relativity, is a virtuoso homage to Escher’s genius.

Bryan Peele designed this construction, which is cut from a single sheet of 8.5 by 11 inch paper and cleverly locks together without glue or tape.

The full scale version of his template, to print, cut, and fold your own paper copy, is available here. Note that Escher’s original design really is constructible in 3D. It is not a perspective trick or optical illusion, and so has also been realized in Lego and other materials.

See all of George Hart’s Math Monday columns

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy person’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.

  • Cory Poole

    I’ve made this before from this diagram. It turns out really cool. Doesn’t take that long either. Probably about an hour.

  • chuck weiss

    Amazing, and so simple!

  • smily baby


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